Growing up: e-AWB reaches 11.2%
Global electronic Air Waybill (e-AWB) penetration continues to rise and reached 11.2% in November, a 1% higher than October and a 5.6% increase from November 2012. The 11.2% rate equates to a volume of 172,579 e-AWBs, an increase of roughly 7,000 shipments from the previous month.
Monthly e-AWB volume
As shown in the latest e-AWB monthly report (pdf), North Asia was the region of origin with the highest volume of electronic documents in November (58,982 e-AWBs), followed by Asia Pacific. However, in terms of penetration, Africa and the Middle East was the leading region with 36.1% in November. Hong Kong is the country of origin with the highest e-AWB volume, at 54,231 documents in November (a penetration rate of 46%).
Reflections from 2013 and e-AWB’s bright future
Looking back over 2013 the reasons behind the slow adoption of e-AWB can be narrowed down to a lack of investment in technology and a challenging legal and regulatory environment.
The future of e-AWB is optimistic due to strong endorsement by several global forwarders, and a commitment to technology investment and the Single Process from airlines making e-AWB more attractive. On top of this, the fast adoption of the Multilateral e-AWB Agreement (MeA) is moving the industry towards the 100% paperless vision. With this hopeful future the e-AWB targets for the next three years are 22% by the end of 2014, 45% by 2015 and 80% by 2016.
Multilateral e-AWB Agreement: the way forward
By the end of December 2013, 481 freight forwarders and 55 airlines had signed the Multilateral e-AWB Agreement. The numbers are rising fast and resulting in a smoother and more simplified process. With the increasing numbers of freight forwarders and airlines joining, don’t get left behind!
The first local freight forwarders from India, Bahrain, Denmark and Ireland have joined the MeA at the end of 2013 and the US had 88 new freight forwarders join. The potential AWB market coverage of parties to the MeA (as of December 2013) was 41% for freight forwarders and 82% for airlines.